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ASHRAE – February Meeting Recap

 by Mark Leonard

ASHRAE Boston saw many familiar faces at this month’s chapter meeting as it featured the annual Past Presidents night at the Embassy Suites in Waltham, MA. The night also held a technical session covering hydraulic shock in refrigeration systems followed by the main presentation on “Lessons Learned” in designing AC refrigeration systems by one of the Chapter’s long-time members.

The technical session was presented by Dr. Samuel Martin,  a former professor at Georgia Institute of Technology who currently uses his expertise as a consultant for hydraulic shock and water hammer type applications. He gave an overview of one of his own experiments where he simulated condensation-induced hydraulic shock. The experiment used pressure transducers to study a liquid slug moving through a pipe containing ammonia gas. Dr. Martin also described how the ASHRAE technical committees are structured. He noted that a proposed change can take up to  four years before it takes effect if approved by the appropriate committee.

The social crowd and technical session attendees all gathered in the main hall for dinner. As dinner commenced, ASHRAE Boston Chapter President, Teri Shannon, made her general announcements including reminders for next month’s chapter meeting on March 13th, and the ASHRAE product show on April 8th. Eric Edman, presently Chapter Historian and a past president of ASHRAE Boston, followed Teri by giving a warm introduction to the evening’s main presenter,  Steve Tafone.

Mr. Tafone is currently employed by Suffolk Construction Inc. as the vice president of engineering. With more than 37 years of experience in the HVAC and construction industries, he presented lessons learned on chillers versus direct expansion (DX) for DOAS. He noted that maintenance and floor area play big roles when deciding between the two design approaches. He also emphasized to “know what you’re asking for” when specifying pieces of equipment. Items such as a differential pressure sensor on a chiller system monitoring pump head pressure was one example used to demonstrate how a simple oversight can be very costly in the long run.

The February meeting concluded with Teri Shannon presenting gifts to the presenters followed by her closing remarks.